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Prague Castle to upgrade system of visitor security checks

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Prague, March 30 (CTK) – The Presidential Office is planning to upgrade the system of security checks of visitors to the Prague Castle complex, which is the president’s seat, the Office head Vratislav Mynar has told CTK, adding that he would use all available means to ensure the Castle’s security.

Critics have called the system of obligatory checks unnecessary, bothersome and tourist-unfriendly since its introduction several years ago, but the Presidential Office defends it as a measure reacting to recent security threats and security corps’ demands.

Mynar said the upgraded system should include scanners, a camera system and a modern coordination centre.

In the past, a debate was conducted on the Office’s possible plan to buy a camera system that is capable of distinguishing and recognising faces.

Mynar said he does not know whether such a system would be purchased and installed.

“I do not support a system of a Big Brother who can see everything. Nevertheless, I understand it that things have developed this way,” Mynar said, adding that his office has been discussing the issue with experts.

He said the checks at the entrances to Prague Castle should become more comfortable for not only the visitors but also the police and soldiers on duty.

The current provisional shelters are to be replaced with roofed and heated checkpoints. They will be located elsewhere than now. One, in the direction from the nearest tram stop north of the complex, would be situated in the Royal Garden.

The location of the other checkpoint, which serves to check the vistors coming from the Hradcanske Square, is yet to be decided on.

Mynar said he would like to do so in cooperation with the Prague Archbishopric that is seated in Hradcanske Square.

“We are seeking support of the Prague Archbishopric…so that we can partly use its gardens,” he said.

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